Producer Phillip Rodriguez Acquires Rights To ‘The Strange Career of William Ellis’

Posted in Articles, Arts, Biography, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Media Archive, Mexico, Passing, Slavery, United States on 2019-08-21 23:02Z by Steven

Producer Phillip Rodriguez Acquires Rights To ‘The Strange Career of William Ellis’

Deadline: Breaking Hollywood News Since 2006
2019-08-21

Dino-Ray Ramos, Associate Editor/Reporter

EXCLUSIVE: Producer and indie filmmaker Phillip Rodriguez has optioned the film and TV rights to Karl Jacoby’s book The Strange Career of William Ellis: The Texas Slave Who Became a Mexican Millionaire. Rodriguez is set to develop and produce the narrative-based project

Jacoby’s prize-winning book tells the true story of William Ellis, a larger-than-life figure who was born on the U.S.-Mexico border in the twilight of slavery and inhabited a world divided along ambiguous racial lines. Adopting the name Guillermo Eliseo, he passed as Mexican, transcending racial lines to become fabulously wealthy as a Wall Street banker, diplomat, and owner of scores of mines and haciendas south of the border. In The Strange Career of William Ellis, Columbia University historian Jacoby weaves an astonishing tale of cunning, scandal, self-invention and the abiding riddle of race in America

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Zendaya to produce, star in thriller on Anita Hemmings, first black woman Vassar grad, passing as white to attend

Posted in Articles, Arts, Biography, Media Archive, Passing, United States on 2017-11-15 17:59Z by Steven

Zendaya to produce, star in thriller on Anita Hemmings, first black woman Vassar grad, passing as white to attend

Shadow And Act
2017-11-14


Zendaya (left) and Anita Hemmings (right).

Zendaya has booked what Deadline calls a hot pitch package on the street right now.

The film is called ‘A White Lie’ and it is a film adaptation of the Karin Tanabe novel, The Gilded Years.

The novel, a psychological thriller, “built around the true story of Anita Hemmings, a light-skinned African American woman. She is the daughter of a janitor, who passed as white so she could attend Vassar at the turn of the century.” She is treated as a wealthy and educated white woman and sparks a romance with a rich Harvard student.

Zendaya will play Hemmings…

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Zendaya To Star In ‘A White Lie,’ Pitch Package From Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine

Posted in Articles, Arts, Biography, Media Archive, Passing, United States on 2017-11-15 17:43Z by Steven

Zendaya To Star In ‘A White Lie,’ Pitch Package From Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine

Deadline
2017-11-13

Mike Fleming Jr


REX/Shutterstock

The hot pitch package on the street is A White Lie, an adaptation of the Karin Tanabe novel The Gilded Years. The book is a psychological thriller built around the true story of Anita Hemmings, a light-skinned African-American woman. The daughter of a janitor, she passed as white so she could attend Vassar at the turn of the 20th century. Spider-Man: Homecoming star co-star Zendaya will play Hemmings. Monica Beletsky is writing the script, and Hello Sunshine’s Witherspoon and Lauren Neustadter are producing along with Zendaya…

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